God's plan of salvation requires 5 steps to go from being a non-believer to becoming a Christian. There is no one verse in the Bible that states all the steps. Instead we must read the entire New Testament to get the whole picture. An easy saying to remember is ... "There are more steps toware salvation then are found in any one verse, but there can never be less!" That is we may find one or two steps listed in one verse, so we know those steps are important. Then in another place we find a couple more steps ... but one of the steps from the first verse is omitted from the second verse. "Why is this?" you may wonder. It's because the other steps are assumed. For instance, in Acts 9:18 it says Paul immediately after receiving his sight arose and was baptized. Can we assume from this that Paul did not need to belief in Jesus? Of course not. It's rather obvious that Paul did believe or he wouldn't have been baptized. We are also not told that Paul repented of his sins, or that he confessed Jesus as Lord and Savior, but it's obvious from his later life that he did all of these.
Let's look at what the Bible says about becoming a Christian ...
First off, why do we need to become a Christian? Romans 3:23 says "All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God."
Rom 6:23 "For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord."
If everyone has sinned, then everyone will reap the payment for their sins which is death, unless they seek God's gift of eternal life. How do we receive this gift? By following the steps to salvation ... God's Plan of Salvation!
Step One: HEAR
Romans 10:17 "So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God."
What do you need to hear? Jesus is the Son of God who came to earth and died for our sins. Then rose and lives at the right hand of God. John 3:16, For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life."
Mark 16:15 "And He [Jesus] said to them, 'Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.'"
Step Two: BELIEVE
Acts 10:43 "Of Him allthe prophets bear witness that through His name everyone who believes in Him receives forgiveness of sins."
What do they need to believe? Jesus is the Son of God who came to earth and died for our sins. Then rose and lives at the right hand of God. (see John 3:16-17)
See also: Mark 16:16; John 8:24; and Romans 10:9
Step Three: REPENT
Luke 13:3 "... unless you repent you will all likewise perish."
Repent means "sorrow for sin that leads to a change". It also means "turning away from something (sin) and towards something else (God)."
See also: Matthew 3:2; Mark 1:15; 6:12; Acts 3:9; 17:30
Step Four: CONFESS
Romans 10:9 "if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved."
We must believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God, and accept Him as our personal Savior!
To whom do we confess this belief in Jesus? EVERYONE!
Step Five: BAPTISM
Acts 2:38 "... be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins;"
The Greek word "baptizo" (baptism) actually means "immersion". Baptism can only be done by completely immersing a person in water.
See also: Acts 22:16; Gal. 3:27; Col. 2:12; Romans 6:4; and I Peter 3:21.
And after you are saved, what will you do then?
II Timothy 2:15, "Study to show yourself approved unto God, a workman that does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of God." This means we need to read and study the Bible daily to understand God's plan for our lives, and so we are ready to answer questions others may ask us about being a Christian.
Matthew 28:19-20 "Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in nthe name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world." As we learn more about God's plan for salvation, we need to teach it to others and God will be with us as we do ... Forever!